A groundbreaking and beautifully written history of ballet, from its origins to the present, by a dancer turned historian and critic- will do for ballet what Alex Ross' The Rest Is Noise did for music.
Apollo's Angels is a major new history of classical ballet. It begins in the courts of Europe, where ballet was an aspect of aristocratic etiquette and a political event as much as it was an art. The story takes the reader from the sixteenth century through to our own time, from Italy and France to Britain, Denmark, Russia and contemporary America. The reader learns how ballet reflected political and cultural upheavals, how dance and dancers were influenced by the Renaissance and French Classicism, by Revolution and Romanticism, by Expressionism and Bolshevism, Modernism and the Cold War. Homans goes into the lives of dancers and traces the formal evolution of technique, choreography and performance. Her book ends by looking at the contemporary crisis in ballet now that 'the masters are dead and gone' and offers a passionate plea for the centrality of classical dance in our civilization.
Jennifer Homans was a professional dancer who trained at the School of American Ballet. When she retired from dancing, she studied European and American cultural history at Columbia and New York Universities and then turned to dance criticism. She lives in New York City with her family.
Paperback - C format
Dance & other performing arts